Harold Schechter is an American true-crime writer who specializes in serial killers. Twice nominated for the Edgar Award, he is the author of the nonfiction books Fatal, Fiend, Bestial, Deviant, Deranged, Depraved, The Serial Killer Files, The Mad Sculptor, and Man-Eater. Schechter attended the State University of New York in Buffalo, where he earned his PhD under the direction of Leslie Fiedler. He is a professor of American literature and popular culture at Queens College of the City University of New York. Schechter is married to poet Kimiko Hahn and has two daughters, the writer Lauren Oliver and professor of philosophy Elizabeth Schechter.
"Schechter's deep research and storytelling flair ensure readers will hang in to see if he can solve this century-old puzzle." --Ellery Queen's Mystery Magazine"In Harold Schechter's lucid and well-researched Hell's Princess, Gunness--his ruthless, devious protagonist and, according to the book's subtitle, a 'butcher of men'--deserves a prominent place in the annals of America's serial killers." --Wall Street Journal"The best books regarding criminality involve serial killers, and that is certainly the case for the best true-crime books of 2018...Harold Schechter delivers a full-length background and overview of one of the worst murderers in American history that no one has heard of." --Criminal"This true-crime narrative does justice to the larger-than-life Belle Gunness and her fascinating context, keeping the reader immersed in the story even as we recoil from its many horrors." --CrimeReads"Hell's Princess takes its place among Schechter's other true-crime classics as the definitive rendering of one of the most beguiling and brutal of all female serial killers. His gruesome page-turner, grounded in meticulous historical research, confirms his reputation as one of the top true-crime writers of our time." --Psychology Today"With riveting and thorough detail, Schechter tracks the mystery of Lamphere's culpability in the arson and closes with a possibly related murder that took place decades after the 1908 house fire. True-crime fans will be hooked from the start." --Publishers Weekly"Featuring previously undiscovered details and rich historical context, this authoritative account firmly establishes Schechter as one of America's leading crime chroniclers. A fascinating and dramatic page-turner that will be a new favorite among true-crime fans." --Kirkus Reviews"[Schechter's] goal is to help us understand not just what his subjects did but also why they did what they did--what internal torments and psychological traits drove them to become brutal killers. A sharply written, compelling account from a proven winner." --Booklist"Hell's Princess is an excellent, spellbinding read. Schechter is a master storyteller and a true ethnographer of the old Midwest." --New York Journal of Books"This biography of a prolific and brutal serial killer will be of interest to Midwestern regional history buffs as well as true-crime fans." --Library Journal"Hell's Princess can take its place among Schechter's other true-crime classics as the definitive rendering of one of the most beguiling and brutal of all female serial killers. His gruesome page-turner about Belle Gunness, grounded in meticulous historic research, confirms his reputation as one of the top true-crime writers of our time." --Katherine Ramsland, bestselling author of Confession of a Serial Killer"Harold Schechter's Hell's Princess had me on the edge of my seat to the last page! Like Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's Hound of the Baskervilles, Schechter's hound that is always ready to pounce is Belle Gunness, America's most notorious female serial killer. Schechter's achievement is humanizing this inhuman monster, while making us feel the neediness and loneliness urging Belle's victims to give up everything to get into her bed. How the case ultimately turns out is a seminal event in jurisprudence, [portrayed here] by one of America's greatest storytellers and historians." --Fred Rosen, author of Murdering the President: Alexander Graham Bell and the Race to Save James Garfield"Harold Schechter demonstrates why he is the dark prince master of American true-crime history, in this first definitive account of notorious female serial killer Belle Gunness and her 'human slaughterhouse murder farm.'" --Peter Vronsky, author of Serial Killers: The Method and Madness of Monsters